Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Doughboy Needs Your Help!

Jason Lee, the founder of and one of Secret Identities' earliest supporters, is in the process of producing a short film called "Doughboy."

Doughboy, is a short film dark comedy about Felix, a superfan of Data (the Asian American kid from The Goonies), who decides to pursue his late father’s American Dream of making funnel cakes as easy to find as the hot dog. He designs and builds a mobile funnel cake-making suit inspired by Data and begins to sell them on the streets of Little Tokyo. It’s a million dollar idea, but there is one fatal flaw that he is forced to realize when he is confronted by a militant activist group protesting the name of his business: Data’s Funnel Cakes.

Check out the trailer below:

Unfortunately, Jason needs to raise some more money to get this project off the ground! This is where you come in. Just visit Doughboy's Kickstarter page and pledge to donate as little as $1 to help support a young Asian American filmmaker bring Doughboy to life. The world could use another Asian American hero. And more funnel cakes.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Make Your Own "Evil Chinese Professor!"

Since we recently announced Volume 2 would be dedicated to shattering Asian stereotypes, it only makes sense to point you all to a brand new Asian stereotype just in time for the midterm elections, thanks to the right-wing "think" tank Citizens Against Government Waste: the Evil Chinese Professor!

Well, now it's our turn to reclaim Professor Evil. A few Asian Am blogs--Angry Asian Man, 8Asians, Disgrasian, Reappropriate, channelAPA, and Hyphen--have gotten together to sponsor this contest.


Download the .ZIP archive, including the subtitle-stripped .MOV file and .RTF text file transcript of the original "Chinese Professor" video.

Get the video file, write a hilarious alternate monologue for the Evil Chinese Professor, re-subtitle the footage, add a call-to-action voiceover at the end, and upload your parody to a video sharing service like YouTube or Vimeo (Heck, upload wherever you can. CAGW is apparently cracking down on all parodies).

Then send the link to The best three videos as judged by the sponsoring bloggers will win some fabulous as-yet-undetermined prizes. The deadline to submit is November 27, which happens to be Bruce Lee's birthday.

Monday, October 11, 2010


The creators of the pioneering anthology of Asian American comics, SECRET IDENTITIES, are excited to announce that work is now underway on a second volume of all-new tales set in the grand tradition of heroic graphical fiction: SECRET IDENTITIES VOLUME 2: SHATTERED, targeting a 2012 publication date.

"Sales of the first volume have been far beyond what we could have possibly expected," says Secret Identities ( Editor-in-Chief Jeff Yang. "And the reaction from readers has continued to pour in: We want more. And we wanted more too."


The first volume was one of the year's best-selling books for independent publisher The New Press, which quickly expressed interest in continuing the series. But it was a generous development grant from the Vilcek Foundation that has ultimately made the new volume possible.

"Putting together the first book was a monumental task," says Secret Identities Managing Editor Parry Shen. "And the more we thought about doing a sequel, the more we realized we had to figure out a way to make it even bigger, better and more boundary-breaking than the original."

The Vilcek Foundation, whose mission is to honor and celebrate the outstanding artistic and scientific contributions of immigrant innovators and creators in the United States, profiled the unique role of immigrants in comic books in their Summer 2010 Newsletter ( — and chose to showcase Secret Identities, whose 66 contributors include creators born in Taiwan, Korea, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and the Philippines among their number, as a unique example of the graphic novel art. Upon hearing that the Secret Identities team was thinking of doing a sequel, they offered to support the lengthy editorial and artistic process necessary to make it happen.


"We already had an idea of where we wanted to go," says Education Director and Editor at Large Keith Chow. "In the first volume, we focused on using superheroes as a lens through which to expose and celebrate Asian American history and culture. This time, we wanted to expand our perspective to the darker side of the SI Universe, while also incorporating a broader range of comic genres — from hard-boiled pulp to martial arts, adventure and science fiction."

The idea was originally seeded when, at a 2009 New York Comic Con panel on Secret Identities, an audience member noted that as exciting as the project sounded, it was easy to tell stories about heroes — the real challenge is to tell stories about villains. It was then that the SI team began to consider the possibility of exploring the nefarious, sinister and menacing side of the good guy/bad guy equation in order to upend, reenvision, reimagine — to shatter — distorted or negative images that have shadowed Asian Americans since the earliest days of our arrival in this country.

"The idea of putting a focus on stories that showcased strong and vivid interactions between heroes and villains — even stories with the 'villain' as protagonist — opens up so many interesting ways to question the power of perception to shape reality," says Yang. "It also inspired us to conceive of a narrative that will serve as the framing story for the book — a single long tale whose multiple episodes will introduce each book's chapter, while allowing us to continue the stories of some of our favorite characters from Volume One."


The framing story will follow the aftereffects of an unfortunate mystical accident perpetrated by the protagonists of Volume One's "Driving Steel" — Jimson Fo and his young friend (and future American legend) John Henry — which releases a quintet of archfiends into the world, each with the power to reshape reality to conform to its image: The Manipulator, The Temptress, The Brute, The Brain and The Alien. The immortal Fo then takes it upon himself to pursue the demons across the ages, collaborating with heroes of each time period to defeat and destroy these infernal nemeses.

"The two things people told us they wanted most in a second volume were longer arcs and continuations of the stories of some of the characters they loved in the first book," says Art Director Jerry Ma. "This framing story gives us a way to make that possible. But there'll be plenty of original stories and characters in Volume Two — including characters imagined by readers and audiences at the many places where we've brought Secret Identities in the past few years."


Since the publication of Secret Identities in 2009, the SI Team has presented a unique workshop at schools, colleges and community institutions across the nation — a session called “Build a Hero,” in which they work with audiences to create original superhero characters on the spot, with editors guiding the crowd to collaboratively weave an identity, origin and backstory while an artist sketches and inks the hero on the fly.

"We think bringing the audience into the book is one of the most important things we've been able to do with Secret Identities," says Shen. "Some of the most interesting stories and characters in Volume One came from people who'd never even tried to write for comics before — but had a brilliant vision of something they wanted to bring to life. We just helped them do it!"

In that spirit, the SI Team is once again soliciting contributions — in the form of brief pitches for story ideas and characters (both heroes and villains) emailed to Artists are also invited to submit samples of their work or links to their online portfolios for the editors to evaluate.

These stories/characters will be featured alongside already confirmed contributors such as Cliff Chiang (Justice League: Generation Lost), Greg Pak (Incredible Hercules, World War Hulk) and Bernard Chang (Superman, Wonder Woman).

More details on what the team is looking for can be found at, including a downloadable contributors' guide.

To schedule interviews with SECRET IDENTITIES’ editors and contributors or to request further information on Volume Two, please email Jeff Yang at or Keith Chow at

Monday, July 19, 2010

The SIU Invades Comic-Con. Again.

Well, it's that time of year when all of fandom descends on sunny southern California for a sensory overload of lights, sound and sweat. Yes, people, it's Comic-Con time. And just like last year, you can find the diverse members of the SECRET IDENTITIES fam throughout the San Diego Convention Center.

In addition to Jerry Ma and Parry Shen (Fri. and Sat.) at the Epic Props booth #1737, be sure to seek out the rest of the SIUniverse

Bernard Chang: booth #1223
Cliff Chiang: booth #1320
Ming Doyle: booth #N11 & DD10
Larry Hama: booth #2307
Erwin Haya: booth #D06
Martin Hsu: booth #G02
Benton Jew: booth #DD-23
Kazu Kibuishi: booth #2235
Dustin Nguyen: booth #FF-04
Jonathan Tsuei: booth #DD-10
Blacklava: booth #4929

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

SI at the SI! Talkstory at the 2010 Folklife Fest

This past Sunday, the SI crew (Secret Identities, that is) got a chance to talk about the book and "build a hero" with a volunteer from the audience at the Smithsonian Institute's (the other SI, natch) 2010 Folklife Festival.

It was definitely an awesome experience to get a chance to be a part of such a great tradition. Big thanks to Phil Nash, Terry Hong, Chloe Ith, Kozue Tsunoda, and the rest of the Smithsonian staff and volunteers that made this happen!

To read more about our adventures in the D.C. heat, read Jerry's recap For What It's Worth and the Smithsonian's Asian Pacific American Program's official blog.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

SIUniverse Ballers Crowned a Champ... Like, Two Monrhs Ago

So, the NBA Finals are about to begin tomorrow night, and once again it's the Lakers vs. Celtics (which, I think would make an awesome name for a basketball video game. Get on that EA Sports.) And I was reminded that we sponsored a fantasy NBA league full of SI fam, fans, and friends.

Well, we can report that L.A.-based musician/sound engineer Ethan Chu walked away as the league champ, but the real winner was Dream League. The Asian American community basketball organization received a cool $100 donated from the various SIUniverse Ballers! So congrats Dream League! And go Lakers (for those of you reppin' the Westside) and go Celtics (for our Beantown fam)!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Bid on Items from the SI Crew to Benefit ImaginAsian

We've mentioned the ImaginAsian fundraiser to benefit the APA programs in Indiana before, but now the gallery is finally on exhibit at Purdue University and now, some of the items on display are now up for auction here.

Among the plethora of cool items up for sale include some nifty contributions from members of the SI fam. Check out the SI-related items and bid on 'em to help out a great cause!

Of course, there are tons of other really cool items from every corner of Asian America available, including some more SI-related swag. Stay tuned and get involved!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Valentine's Day = A box of chocolates.

Chinese New Year's = A Red Envelope.

Asian-Pacific Heritage Month = a copy of SECRET IDENTITIES: The Asian American Superhero Anthology.

Do you have your copy yet?

If not, you're in luck because SECRET IDENTITIES is teaming up with BLACKLAVA for today's Daily Deal! And to celebrate, a lot of green screen was used for the Hot Minute Video (as seen below).

Orders received within the first 24 hours will receive a BOOKPLATE(drawn by Art Director, Jerry Ma) AND a SIGNED LITHOGRAPH of Kelly Hu and Cliff Chiang's creation, "JIA" -- free!

There are two editions to select from: An Unsigned Book for $20 OR a Signed Book for $35 (autographs and artwork on inside cover from Keiko Agena, Sung Kang, Lynn Chen, Benton Jew, A.L. Baroza, Martin Hsu, Bernard Chang and Parry Shen ).

This is a deal you can't get on Amazon. Shipping is free so don't delay as once this deal is gone -- it's gone!

Check out the deal at:

Saturday, April 10, 2010

C2E2 Chicago Comic Con Badge Giveaway!

In just a couple of weeks, I’ll be attending the C2E2 Comic Con in Chicago, April 16-18 at my usual Epic Proportions Booth(729). Unfortunately I'll be the only Secret Identities Editor there, but hopefully you can join me!
This is the first year for this show, but I have no doubt in my mind that it’s going to be a great show.
I’m in my apartment right now preparing for it.
I can’t wait to get there, as Geof Darrow will be sitting at my booth each day signing autographs and promoting the new shirt he’s done with me. Which is based off of his Shaolin Cowboy comic. You can see the shirt here.

Anyway, in part of my excitement for the con, I’d like to give out one free badge to someone for the weekend. Meaning, whoever gets this badge will not have to pay to enter the show, but will have to find their own way to Chicago.
All you have to do to be considered for the badge is just write me an email at:

Let me know how why you want to come. And then after you’ve won, come hang out with me and the crew in Chicago.



Saturday, February 27, 2010

Parry Shen is The Man of Tomorrow

Facebook and Twitter followers are already aware, but if you're not one of them (and why aren't you?!) make sure you check out this exclusive PopCultureShock interview with the one and only Parry Shen!

In the link, Parry and I talk about how he got the part in Better Luck Tomorrow, how we suckered him into joining the Secret Identities crew, being on Team Coco (that's Parry with his stuntman on Hatchet, the Asian Conan himself, Steven Ho in the photo) and what it feels like to be a video game character. There's a lot more in the link, so if you haven't read the interview, what are ya waiting for?!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Follow the SI Crew on Twitter!

After a few months of prodding, the whole S.I. editorial crew is now on Twitter. While you've been able to follow us as a collective (@SIUniverse) for several months now, Jerry Ma (@epicprops) and Parry Shen (@parryshen) have joined fellow tweeters Jeff Yang (@originalspin) and me, Keith (@the_real_chow) on the mirco-blogging phenomenon. So if you were ever interested in the mundane we do on a daily basis, give us a follow.

And we aren't the only SI alums on Twitter. You can also find the likes of Keiko Agena, Greg Pak, Jamie Ford, Martin Hsu, and more! Just check out this list of everyone in the Secret Identities fam.

Friday, January 15, 2010

ImaginAsian: Identity and Experience in Contemporary Asian Pacific America

Thought I'd take a break from the 2009 retrospectives (What? We're already two weeks into 2010?!) to give a shout out to Secret Identities superfan (and former Angry Asian Man Reader of the Week) Kate Agathon and her call for contributions to her pet project, the ImaginAsian exhibition, to raise funds for materials and resources for Asian American Studies collections at the libraries of Purdue and Indiana University.

Several members of the S.I. crew have donated submissions for the installation. Parry Shen contributed a collage of his work on S.I. and Better Luck Tomorrow; Jerry Ma collaborated with the Angry Asian Man himself, Phil Yu, on a pair of sketches featuring Bruce Lee and Quick Kick; I submitted signed copies of a poem about Bruce Lee called "Like Water" and a script page from "Peril"; and Larry Hama turned in a couple original G.I. Joe sketches.

So as you can see, it's a fun and worthy cause. Check out the official announcement below, and get involved!

ImaginAsian: Identity and Experience in Contemporary Asian Pacific America
Fundraising Exhibition April 2- May 9, 2010

In celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month 2010 and to generate funding for materials and sources for Asian American Studies collections at the Purdue University and Indiana University libraries, Kate Agathon, the Council on Asian American Studies, the Tippecanoe Arts Federation, and the Asian American Network of Indiana (AANI) are sponsoring a fundraising installation/exhibition of donated art addressing identity and experience within contemporary Asian Pacific America. The exhibition is intended to raise awareness and understanding of the Asian American community as articulated through a variety of art including photography, visual, and literary.

Open to everyone, submissions are being solicited nation-wide. Celebrity contributors include writer Maxine Hong Kingston, director Michael Kang, actor Parry Shen, hip hop group Far East Movement, Congressman Mike Honda, artist Stella Lai, illustrator/graphic designer Jerry Ma, poet Bao Phi, writer Tao Lin, comic legend Larry Hama, and many other prominent stakeholders within the Asian American community. Contributors do not need to be of Asian descent to participate!

For a donation of $5 or more, contributors are asked to fill an 8.5 x 11” space with creative art, writing, photography or any other artistic medium that addresses contemporary Asian Pacific American identity or the Asian Pacific American experience. Each submission will be vetted by a team for common themes and appropriateness.

Inspired by the Greater Lafayette Art Museum’s Mosaic, ImaginAsian will comprise of a display of 8.5 x 11” creative gifts celebrating the contemporary Asian Pacific American experience. The exhibit will be displayed April 2- May 9, 2010 at the Tippecanoe Arts Federation located at 638 North Street, Lafayette, IN 47901.

Bidders can bid on their favorite pieces of work by taking part in a silent auction that will take place throughout the duration of the exhibit. Submissions must be received by February 28, 2010 and can be sent to:

Kate Agathon
1809 Bengal Place
Lafayette, IN 47909

Checks made payable to the Asian American Network of Indiana are welcome. The Asian American Network of Indiana is a not-for- profit organization. All gifts are tax exempt. For more information, contact Kate Agathon at

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

2009 Rewind: The Year of Secret Identities, Part Four

Happy New Decade, loyal SI blog readers! While I had intended to finish these look-backs before the end of the year (they are "end-of-year" recaps after all), it seems I've let these 2009 rewinds slip into 2010. Ah well, it is what it is. Anyway, Part four brings us to the summertime which featured two major events.

Of course, the big one was San Diego Comic-Con in July, but we kicked off the season with a little convention of our own: the Asian American ComiCon at the brand new Museum of Chinese in America in New York.

What initially supposed to be an event to showcase Secret Identities quickly morphed into a full-on comic convention--with an artist alley, a bevy of panels, special guests, a performance by the awesome band Paperdoll, and even an award ceremony for the Man himself, Larry Hama! The whole thing came together in, like, five weeks and fortunately went off (mostly) without a hitch! One of the day's special guests, Derek Kirk Kim, had a nice write-up on his blog, and the event itself got nice reviews by Publishers Weekly and Comic Book Resources. Even the Wall Street Journal got in on the act!

Some other highlights from the AACC include Bernard Chang and Sean Chen facing off in a real time comic battle, as captured by MTV:

MTV IggyComic Artists Face-Off: Bernard Chang vs. Sean Chen

And an epic night of karaoke, as captured by SI contrib Jeremy Arambulo. Our friends at TurtlistMedia also have an excellent recap of the Asian American ComiCon, as well as an in-depth interview with me, Parry and Jeff (from our appearance at Northwestern University). Needless to say, the AACC was an example of the community (both comics and Asian American) coming together to celebrate art and good times!

To keep up with what went down at AACC, and if and when there'll be another, become a fan of the Asian American ComiCon on Facebook!

But our summer was not over. In fact, it was just beginning. After a brief stop in Baltimore to visit the Geppi Entertainment Museum with Larry Hama, we were off to San Diego for the mother of all comic conventions: Comic-Con International! And this was a big deal for us, because, as in Los Angeles at JANM, SDCC meant a huge Secret Identities family reunion.

And thanks to our awesome Art Director Jerry Ma, we had (mostly) free reign of the Epic Proportions booth. We took advantage of our awesome booth space by hosting a bunch of celebrity signings. Kicking it off with the "Blue Scorpion" of Gene Yang and Sonny Liew, with a surprise appearance by Larry Hama. We also had Gilmore Girls star Keiko Agena stop by with her "Learn to Share" artist Ming Doyle and star Kelly Hu and DC artists Cliff Chiang and Bernard Chang. Jeff even had time to moderate a panel with Gail Simone, Dwayne McDuffie, Jai Nitz, Stuart Moore and Gene Yang.

Be sure to check our Facebook page to see more photos from our exploits in San Diego!

Come back next time to see the last of our 2009 Rewind posts in which we'll go over the events of the fall, including our first ever Baltimore Comic-Con and a swing through New England. And I promise to get it posted before another year is over.